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China August styrene monomer imports lowest in 16 months at 260,691 mt

China’s imports of styrene monomer fell to the lowest level in 16 months in August at 260,691 mt as demand weakened, data released Tuesday, September 23, by Chinese customs showed.

Month-on-month, imports fell 25.0%. Year-on-year they were down 26.8%.

The last time imports were lower was in April 2013 at 238,333 mt.

Imports from the largest supplier, South Korea, tumbled 45,748 mt, or 28.7%, from July to 113,539 mt in August, likely as a result of SK Global Chemical shutting one of its plants in late July due to poor margins.

CFR China SM prices fell 5.5% to $1,542/mt on August 29 from $1,632/mt on August 1 as inventory levels in China remained relatively high and demand from the expandable polystyrene sector was weaker than in previous years.

Imports from other large suppliers also fell month-on-month, with Japan down 51.5% to 27,919 mt, Saudi Arabia down 37.1% to 24,820 mt and Taiwan down 20% to 36,013 mt.

– Platts.com

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